Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Petrotrade case proceeding as a normal non-urgent matter – Chinyoka

Top lawyer Tinomudaishe Chinyoka has scoffed at a report by the Daily News claiming that his case against his suspension as Petrotrade (NOCZIM) board chairman had been dismissed. Chinyoka told Nehanda Radio the matter was only removed from a list of urgent cases with his consent at a time he was in hospital.

Chinyoka approached the High Court last month seeking to overturn Energy Minister Soda Zhemu’s decision to suspend him along with Zanele Dube, Simbarashe Mhuriro, Gladys Mumhure, Ferida Matambo, Lilian Timveos, Getrude Marabada, Godfrey Ncube and Dakarai Mukuku as Petrotrade board members.

He confirmed that the matter was removed from the roll of urgent cases this week by Justice David Mangota. His confirmation put away some media reports which claimed that the case was dismissed.

“The application was not dismissed. It was simply changed from being an urgent application to a normal application. By consent, If might add, which means both my lawyers and theirs agreed to this course of action.

“It would help, before reporting on court cases, for some journalists to familiarize themselves with what court terms mean,” he said.

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“Removal from the roll simply means ‘removal from the list’, in this case the list of urgent cases. It is now proceeding as a normal non-urgent matter.

“As I indicated, there were challenges with my representation at a time when I was in hospital over some health matters when the matter came up for hearing and I instructed my lawyers to agree with the Minister’s lawyers to remove the matter from the urgent roll.”

Zhemu suspended the board for allegedly interfering with the company’s daily operations and tender processes.

But sources told Nehanda Radio Chinyoka was elbowed out after opposing the selling of Petrotrade for only US$37 million to controversial business tycoon and President Emmerson Mnangagwa ally Kudakwashe Tagwirei.

Chinyoka dragged Minister Zhemu to court exposing allegations of looting of hundreds of millions at Petrotrade. He also argued that the Minister had no power to suspend him.

“1st Respondent has no power under the Public Entities to suspend the Board. If anyone does , it is the second respondent.1st Respondent‘s use of section 11 of the Public Entities Act to suspend the board is wrong as there is no such power in that section ,” Chinyoka said. Nehanda Radio